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Development 2016 Jan 15;1432:298-305. doi: 10.1242/dev.125989.
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Neurogenic gene regulatory pathways in the sea urchin embryo.

Wei Z , Angerer LM , Angerer RC .

During embryogenesis the sea urchin early pluteus larva differentiates 40-50 neurons marked by expression of the pan-neural marker synaptotagmin B (SynB) that are distributed along the ciliary band, in the apical plate and pharyngeal endoderm, and 4-6 serotonergic neurons that are confined to the apical plate. Development of all neurons has been shown to depend on the function of Six3. Using a combination of molecular screens and tests of gene function by morpholino-mediated knockdown, we identified SoxC and Brn1/2/4, which function sequentially in the neurogenic regulatory pathway and are also required for the differentiation of all neurons. Misexpression of Brn1/2/4 at low dose caused an increase in the number of serotonin-expressing cells and at higher dose converted most of the embryo to a neurogenic epithelial sphere expressing the Hnf6 ciliary band marker. A third factor, Z167, was shown to work downstream of the Six3 and SoxC core factors and to define a branch specific for the differentiation of serotonergic neurons. These results provide a framework for building a gene regulatory network for neurogenesis in the sea urchin embryo.

PubMed ID: 26657764
PMC ID: PMC4725339
Article link: Development
Grant support: [+]

Genes referenced: gll hnf6 LOC100887844 LOC100888622 LOC115917880 onecut2 pou1f1 six6 sox4
Antibodies: LOC115917880 Ab1 phospho-LOC754126 Ab2
Morpholinos: gll MO1 gll MO2 pou1f1 MO3 pou1f1 MO4 sox4 MO2 sox4 MO3

GEO Series: GSE76067: NCBI
References [+] :
Angerer, The evolution of nervous system patterning: insights from sea urchin development. 2011, Pubmed, Echinobase